No, they’re not in training for I’m A Celebrity… they’re just going to school
- Children balance on a high wire 30 feet above a rushing river to get to school
- A bridge was destroyed by heavy rainfall more than two years ago
- The students then have to walk another seven miles through the woods to get there
If you thought getting the kids to school was a chore, think about the parents of these kids who have to balance on a high wire 30 feet above a rushing river to get to their class on time.
These determined Sumtra students then walk another seven miles through dense forest to their school in the town of Padang.
Instead of playing truant every day, 20 strong-willed students from the village of Batu Busuk on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia, have been forced to cross the local river as daredevils since the suspension bridge collapsed in torrential rain more than two years ago.
Daredevil route: children use high cables to cross the river, 30 feet below, to go to school in Padang, Indonesia
Heavy rain: during the wet season, some children decide not to make the crossing for fear of falling into the rushing river below
Local photographer Igoy Fitra Yogi, 31, described how the brave children faced injuries and possible death by drowning so they could attend school.
He said, “These kids have to fight chasing steel wire across the river to get to school.
“They keep their balance by walking slowly over the wire, swinging their arms.
Once across the river, the children have to walk seven miles to reach their school
School days: This student starts the day with a different kind of test, just trying to get to school in Sumatra
High wire: A young boy is determined to get to school on time as he balances 30 feet above the moving river
Risky route: the children risk a 10m fall when crossing the river before school in Pandang every morning
“The river is very fast, some children are afraid of falling into it, and their uniforms get wet when they cross the river.
‘When it’s the rainy season, many children decide not to go to school for fear of being dragged along.
“Sometimes many parents guide their children over the barbed wire to make sure they come across safely.”
People are forced to cross the river in this way due to the lack of access to the village.
Indonesia is hit by natural disasters every year. In July, flash floods hit West Sumatra, killing eight people and leaving more than 250 people homeless. The hardest hit areas were Batu Busuk and Padang.
In September, Padang was hit by flooding after hours of heavy rainfall, killing four people and leaving dozens without homes.
The kids are forced into a balancing act after heavy rain destroyed a local bridge
Fear: Three schoolgirls wait to cross the river on the high wire after heavy rains destroyed the bridge more than two years ago
In the shallow water: These two schoolgirls help each other in the shallow water on their way to school
The school run: a man carries his daughter through the water to take her to school, because there is no access road to the village
To get to the other side: A schoolgirl wades through the rushing river while going to school from Batu Busuk village